Friday, June 1, 2018

The Cook's Atelier

Hey, look! I'm catching up on the books that I've gotten for participating in the Abrams Dinner Party. I get free cookbooks, I post about them, and then I try to find room on my bookshelves (AKA those piles of books in every corner) where I can keep the safe from harm.

This one is a monster. The Cook's Atelier by Marjorie Taylor and Kendall Smith Franchini isn't just a cookbook. As the tagline says, it's Recipes, Techniques, and Stories from Our French Cooking School.

If you like some reading matter along with your recipes, this is definitely the book for you. The first 60ish pages are about techniques, tools, and all sorts of kitchen wisdom. Even when the recipes start in earnest, there are stories interspersed, so you'll have plenty of prose to curl up with as you search for recipes to make.

The book is arranged by season, which makes sense for this sort of book. And it makes browsing a little more productive, since you won't be looking at heavy stews when summer is beating down on your head.

The recipe that I have bookmarked for a definite yes is the Almond-Cherry Galette, It's a simple thing, really. Just the galette dough (we're sent to another page for that), plus sugar, vanilla bean, lemon juice, cherries, butter, egg, and cream. If you've noticed that there is no almond, that's because it's in the galette dough. And that's one of the reasons I'm smitten with this right now. I usually make galettes with a basic pie dough, but that almond flour is intriguing. I must make it.

Of course, it's noted that any seasonal fruit can be used, but the combination of cherries and almond is one of my all-time favorites, so I'll be waiting for cherries to come into season.

As I mentioned, this book is big (about 400 pages), and it's heavy. This isn't something that you'll tuck into your bag for some reading on the train. Well, maybe you will, but I don't take a train to work, and I'm not fond of carrying heavy books to and fro.

But it's packed with information. And recipes. Lots of recipes. While it's doubtful I'll be making the roasted pheasant any time soon, I just might use the same recipe for the next chicken I find that needs roasting. Meanwhile, there are plenty of other recipes, from simple to not-so-simple to keep me out of trouble.

As I mentioned at the top, I got this book at no cost to me as part of the Abrams Dinner Party. They still haven't sent me dinner, but I'm having fun with the books.

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